Mouse at sea gains weight

Disney will always have a special place in my heart ...and other places, and it seems like they may have pulled the trigger on two new ship for the brand, Disney Cruise Line. The big thing when I was there, was the promise of promotion on the new ships, which had been promised for so long, five years ago, that it kinda became a running joke with the crew.

The article below, seem to suggest that DCL may have finally decide to expand the fleet, in a big way. I believe the president of the company, Tom McAlpin, once came on board showing the designs of the new ship, citing that they would be "money machine". Indeed the the whole division has always been a money machine for Disney, but I believe they may have been allot of politics within the company that delayed the building of the new ships. You see, DCL is a division of Parks and Hotels (and run like it too) so even thought the cruise line was very successful they had to drag the whole bureaucracy of Parks and Hotels into decision making, so in my view limited in their success.

Here is the Meyer Werf's brief press release about the deal. While you are there check out the web cam of the building halls. Two cruise ships are being built, one for AIDA and one for Norwegian Cruise Line - kinda cool. They have also started building the Solstice for Celebrity Cruise Line a unit of Royal Carribean Cruise Line. Here is Disney Cruise Line's press release.

Disney finalizes order for 2 ships
Pair will more than double capacity of cruise line as demand increases

Disney Cruise Line announced Monday that it has finalized a contract to build two new cruise ships with German shipbuilder Meyer Werft shipyard. Specific financial terms were not disclosed.

"This is an exciting time at Disney Cruise Line, and we are looking forward to working with Meyer Werft to build two new, innovative ships that will take our immersive, family-focused cruise experience to an entirely new level," Disney Cruise Line President Tom McAlpin said in a statement.

Plans to add two 124,000-ton ships to the fleet were announced in February, when executives signed a letter of intent to negotiate a construction contract with Meyer Werft. The ships will be built in Papenburg, Germany. Scheduled to launch in 2011 and 2012, the ships will more than double the passenger capacity for Disney Cruise Line to meet the demand for Disney's cruise vacations.

The new ocean liners will be significantly larger than the existing 83,000-ton ships -- the Disney Magic and the Disney Wonder -- with 1,250 staterooms each. The Magic and the Wonder are home-ported at Port Canaveral. Disney Cruise Line established the family market within the cruise industry when the business launched in 1998.

interpretations of classic ocean liners of the 1930s. Similar to the original Disney Cruise Line ships, Disney said the new ships will be modernDisney designers -- known as "Imagineers" -- drew their inspiration from the original trans-Atlantic ships that featured a dramatic black hull with two funnels and porthole windows. The profile of the ships, with gentle curves at the stern, combined with sleek angles at the bow, is reminiscent of the art-deco designs of the era.

The Disney ships feature the same exterior colors as Disney icon Mickey Mouse, with a black, white, red and yellow palette. Disney said the new ships will feature detailed Disney scrollwork at the bow and evoke images of the glamour of the golden age of cruising.

The ships were built to respond to demand for new itineraries, the company said. While no announcements have been made on itinerary changes, Disney Cruise Line executives said bookings for future Disney Cruise Line trips on the Mediterranean and on the West Coast have been strong. Disney Cruise Line traditionally offers three-, four- and seven-night Caribbean cruises from Port Canaveral.

"Expanding our fleet will give us the flexibility to offer a variety of itineraries in the future," McAlpin said. "We are looking forward to taking our guests on new adventures to different parts of the world with Disney Cruise Line."